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Affordability and resiliency: Renewing Toronto’s towers

by ERA Architects

Photo courtesy Jesse Colin Jackson Over time, Canada’s aging mid-century towers have become the backbone of the country’s affordable rental supply, home to hundreds of thousands of low and middle-income households across the country.   There are 2,000 postwar apartment towers located throughout Ontario’s Greater Golden Horseshoe Region alone, representing nearly half of the region’s...

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1953 aerial photograph from the City of Toronto Archives, annotated by ERA.

Alexis Cohen presents at the College Art Association (CAA)

by ERA Architects

Alexis Cohen presented at CAA’s 108th Annual Conference, held in Chicago February 12-15, 2020 as part of a panel exploring zoning in the histories of modern art and architecture. The panel was hosted by Christopher M. Ketcham and Deepa Ramaswamy. The CAA is the preeminent international leadership organization in the visual arts, and promotes these...

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Residents and Small artists gather at the opening of Laskay's Gate

Celebrating Laskay through Memory’s Gate

by ERA Architects

Public art has the ability to represent and celebrate the identity of a place. As an architecture firm specializing in built heritage and cultural values, we are increasingly interested in how art and other placemaking interventions can not only represent unique histories but do so in a way that transforms underused spaces into thriving places...

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Ward Cabaret

The Ward Cabaret: The sound of Toronto’s first cross-cultural community

by ERA Architects

Cultural heritage is influenced and shaped by communities and their histories. In Toronto, this means much of the city’s cultural heritage is impacted by the multitudes of different communities that call it home. One theatrical production is giving this cultural heritage a sound. The Ward Cabaret is back in Toronto after a sold-out run at...

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The Cinesphere at Ontario Place

Ontario Place and the value of cultural heritage sites

by ERA Architects

Opened in 1971, Ontario Place was created to be a hub for Torontonians to experience the waterfront and take part in entertainment activities, from the open-air amphitheatre and the Cinesphere, the world’s first permanent IMAX theatre, to the Children’s Village play area and exhibit space. Ontario Place was the embodiment of the province’s economic and...

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Ridgeway workshop

Building for the community, with the community

by ERA Architects

As an architecture firm with values rooted in how we collectively shape and build better cities and their spaces, it’s important to us to engage deeply with the community on our projects. While much of our work starts with assessments of existing buildings, observing their condition and advising site owners on how best to proceed...

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A headshot of Edwin

Announcing Founding Principal Edwin Rowse’s retirement from ERA Architects Inc.

by ERA Architects

One of ERA’s two founding principals, Edwin Rowse, is retiring as of October 1. Edwin and Michael McClelland founded ERA in 1990 with a shared pragmatic, but principled, approach to heritage architecture, planning and conservation. Their ability to provide consistent advice from conception to full implementation of a project became a notable strength of the...

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A historic laneway coach house

Uncovering the potential of Toronto’s laneways

by ERA Architects

Toronto’s laneways are having a moment. For decades, these alleyways were an underused, often neglected, space in a city in need of room to expand and grow. With Toronto City Council approving the adoption of laneway suites across the Toronto and East York district in July after a year-long pilot program, more attention is rightfully...

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WexPOPS: Pop-up Plaza

by ERA Architects

WexPOPS is a pilot of the plazaPOPS project, an initiative spearheaded by Daniel Rotsztain, aka The Urban Geographer, and Brendan Stewart (OALA, CAHP), professor of landscape architecture at the University of Guelph, and former Associate at ERA Architects. In an interview supporting his recent book Palaces for the People: How Social Infrastructure can help fight...

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ERA Principal Graeme Stewart addresses a crowd in front of Ken Soble Tower alongside MP Adam Vaughan during the May 21, 2019 National Housing Strategy announcement.

Affordable, High Efficiency Tower Living

by ERA Architects

ERA is thrilled to be leading the rehabilitation of the Ken Soble Tower which will bring affordable housing options to the city of Hamilton as the first retrofit Passive House tower in Canada. The project recently received $10 million in federal funding which will help transform the tower and set the standard for industry-wide, ultra-low...

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New Approaches to Old Housing

by ERA Architects

For the past decade, Tower Renewal has been defined by research, policy design and action. Through multi-sectoral partnerships, best-practice and primary research, our work has evolved into program design, capacity building, and on-the-ground project implementation with a wide range of stakeholders. This ongoing program of ‘research to action’ was featured in Architectural Design Magazine special...

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Immigration and Daily Life in the Ward

by ERA Architects

We are very excited to announce the latest installation of the ‘Armoury Street Dig’ series of exhibits at Toronto City Hall. Commemorating and interpreting the histories of St John’s Ward, one of Toronto’s first points of settlement for many newcomers throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, the exhibit “Immigration and Daily Life in the Ward: Addresses...

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Our Growing Leadership Team

by ERA Architects

As ERA continues to grow and evolve, the Executives and Associates are very pleased to welcome Sydney Martin to the leadership team as our newest Associate. Sydney has been with ERA for nearly a decade as a heritage conservation specialist whose expertise in architectural history, historic construction techniques and materials, and material repair has been...

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Creative Space & Urban Stone: Public Talk

by ERA Architects

Stone is the most fundamental material but over the last 50 years its creative use has declined in the public realm. Through a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship David F. Wilson aimed to discover how other creatives are exploring the space between tradition & current practice, travelling in the USA & Canada through the summer...

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TALLINN–TORONTO: The Influence of Estonian Modernism in Shaping Toronto

by ERA Architects

This spring, the exhibition To The New World: Estonian Architects in Toronto launched at the Museum of Estonian Architecture (http://www.arhitektuurimuuseum.ee/en/). Following a smaller exhibition and symposium last fall hosted by Toronto’s Tartu College, the show explores the strong Estonian link in the creation of Toronto’s particular branch of modernism. These exhibitions, and forthcoming book, are...

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ERA is on the move.

ERA Has Moved to 625 Church Street

by ERA Architects

For two decades, we have called 10 St Mary Street our home, an eight storey modernist office building (1957) designed by the architects Mathers and Haldenby, whose offices were located on the 8th floor of the building. It seems fitting today as we say goodbye and start a new chapter in ERA’s story, that we’d...

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ERA & CaGBC: Sustainable Development

by ERA Architects

Late last month, on Thursday April 26th, the Toronto Chapter of the Canadian Green Building Council met for their annual Spring Open event. Hosted at the newly opened EY Tower downtown, the event included a series of rapid and informative presentations known as the event’s “Building Blitz” —highlighting the newest and most sustainable buildings in...

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National Housing Strategy Forwards Tower Renewal

by ERA Architects

This month ERA Principal Graeme Stewart joined federal, provincial and municipal leaders at the launch of the first round of National Housing Strategy programs, kicking off a new era for housing in Canada. As a major step in catalyzing Tower Renewal, the National Housing Co-Investment Fund’s ‘Repair and Renewal’ stream targets the repair of 240,000 units,...

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Concrete Toronto Map available now!

by ERA Architects

In partnership with Blue Crow Media, ERA is excited to present the Concrete Toronto Map, now available in stores and online. A companion to Concrete Toronto, the map offers a guide to the City’s longstanding concrete architecture, showcasing a collection of over 40 well-known landmarks and smaller projects built from the 1950s to 1980s. The...

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Government Conference Centre: Progress on Heritage Interiors

by ERA Architects

The heritage interiors and finishes are coming to life at the Government Conference Centre (GCC) in Ottawa. Since the new year, the scaffolding has come down in the General Waiting Room (GWR, as shown here), revealing the rehabilitated suspended ceiling in its entirety and the recently painted imitation travertine wall finishes. The GWR is an...

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Our Expanding Leadership Team

by ERA Architects

As ERA continues to grow and evolve, ERA’s executive and associate team is thrilled to announce the appointment of seven new associates: Alexis Cohen, Dan Eylon, Samantha Irvine, Shelley Ludman, Jordan Molnar, Annie Pelletier, and Janice Quieta. We’re very pleased to recognize the leadership of these new associates and their commitment to ERA’s core values....

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Kensington Market Lofts Presents a Gateway of Colour to the Neighbourhood

by ERA Architects

The scaffolding has finally come down to reveal the brilliant collection of 17 colours featured on the east façade of the Kensington Market Lofts building, a public art piece created by notable local artist and area resident An Te Lui! Inspired by the culturally-diverse public realm in which it is located, it as a gateway...

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Tower Renewal in 2017

by ERA Architects

The Tower Renewal strategy has had significant impact over the past year. Across all levels of government, there is a growing consensus: Tower Renewal can have a scalable impact nation-wide as a means to meet climate change, affordable housing, poverty reduction, smart growth, and economic development objectives. Some highlights include: 1. Announcement of $15.9B Co-Investment Fund, committing...

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Urban Form and Social Energy of the City- the University of Waterloo focuses on isolation in Toronto’s mature suburbs

by ERA Architects

This March, ERA’s Ya’el Santopinto was a panelist at the “Urban Form and Social Energy of the City”, a forum hosted by the University of Waterloo’s School of Architecture. Under the overarching theme of non-isolating urbanism and architecture, discussions explored challenges and opportunities in preserving affordable housing and transforming tower neighbourhoods throughout the Toronto Region....

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Casey House is Awarded the Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Award for Excellence in Conservation

by ERA Architects

The 2017 Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Award for Excellence in Conservation has been awarded to ERA Architects, for the conservation of Casey House. The award highlights projects across the province that contribute to the conservation of a heritage building and the community enhancement it fosters. The firm is thrilled, and could not have successfully completed this...

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